April 1st 2015 marked our one year anniversary since we shut down Noodlehead Marketing. Three months later and we are now 15 months post-mortem.
Life has changed.
Not knowing where this new journey would take me or my family, God has blessed us with different types of provision, including work and relationships.
Thinking about the last 15 months, I recognized three patterns during this new journey. These are habits, I believe, God has honored us as we have harvested the fruit of our labor. Once I recognized these behaviors, I became intentional about living them, and now I wish to share them with you. My hope is they will provide inspiration and encouragement as you journey forward in your own respective paths.
Authentic relationships are open and genuine, and have no strings attached. These relationships are full of a love to serve and give.
A people person since I was born, my early pursuit of success in the business led to my neglect of authentic relationships. For those of us who have worked in sales and business development, we realize how quickly we can find ourselves entangled in a web of negative or hidden motivations.
As Noodlehead Marketing became intentional, we sought out to maintain our relationships. As I shut down the company, community time was top priority as I sought to discover what my next steps were. This included meeting with people with no agenda. Meeting with friends and acquaintances in this context is a freeing experience.
Trusting God as the provider of our family, I was now free to live this decision out. This type of community time was liberating as important relationships went to positively unexpected places.
From these meetings, the most unexpected fruit has come to bear. New friendships, experiences and work came to the surface in ways which surprised me. My bubble had burst, and I was now exploring the world with new eyes.
These relationships have helped in my healing experience. In my revelation of how I have hurt people, how people have been hurt each other on my watch, and how others have hurt me, my inclination was to retreat from people. I had to choose to go against my feelings and engage in these types of relationships. In some cases, it meant doing so with people who hurt me.
Business Strategy #1: Maintain authentic agenda-free relationships.
As a communication specialists, I love to live by example and communicate well! Well motivated, I increased my pro-active communication efforts before shutting down the company.
Those who have worked with me have experienced a disciplined communication process. I follow a routine to make sure clients know what I'm working on, when I am working on it and how much it is costing them. I seek to answer their questions before they ask.
For the public realm, my communication efforts revolve around giving value. From writing a blog post, sharing great content on social media or sending an email newsletter, my community has the opportunity to learn, and keep up with my journey.
My efforts to communicate well, in whatever I'm involved with, is a reflection of me and the work I do. This living example of my work is the best case study you can view when considering working with me. Many clients came directly from these communication efforts.
Business Strategy #2: Proactively communicate with clients, friends and acquaintances to bring them along.
In the past, I struggled with the tension between finishing the work in front of me and looking for the next project. I have made the choice to trust God to bring the next project and focus on doing great work for the clients who are working with me.
This process is one where God is teaching me to trust Him again as he roots out some of my skepticism and jadedness. It seems when a group of projects finish, the next group of projects arrives shortly after. This pattern continues, and it gives me confidence to focus on the work in front of me instead of looking for the next project. Practically speaking, doing excellent work leads to clients continuing to use my skills and refer others my way.
Business Strategy #3: Focus on great work and great customers will seek you out.
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Thank you Samuel Rasmussen for helping to make this blog post better.